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milkandhoney last won the day on March 26 2018

milkandhoney had the most liked content!

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About milkandhoney

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  • DECA Holder
  • Beekeeping Experience
    Semi Commercial


  • Location
    Hawkes Bay

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  1. Many of you are in fact correct of course. My comments were however, for Maurice Field, who describes his experience level as Beginner Beekeeper. As a long time Hawkes Bay Beekeeper, who has apiaries in Eskdale and numerous other parts of the Bay, at no point would I recommend removing honey now and not testing for Tutin. It is simply too prevalent here. This honey may in fact have been removed prior to 31 Dec. He may intend to use it only for personal consumption, he may not intend to barter or sell it. Or, he may intend to do all those things. Incidentally, the 31 Dec cutoff date is arbitrary at best, as most sites had Scolopa nymphs by the last week of November this season.
  2. Good morning and welcome. I suggest approaching the local Beekeepers Club, they may be of help. To the best of my knowledge there is nobody locally that extracts on behalf. Please remember that the all honey extracted now MUST be tested for Tutin. Cheers.
  3. Would one of our Scientist members be able to clarify the situation with regard to Bacillus thuringiensis Var. Kurstaki please, both chemically and legally. I am fairly sure that there has been research done on various Bt isolates that have been found to be toxic to a number of non-target Insect Orders. (As per Dansar's post above.)
  4. Yep. Years ago my brother and cousin were out night shooting on the Station next door. Arrived back really late after a long walk home. Four flat tyres on the Landrover.
  5. Yes. Bottom box, excluder, super then division board. Second brood box with Queen above that. No, I don't want her laying in the honey super, that goes back up on top when the hive is recombined.
  6. I use the vertical split method every spring, I started doing it when I didn't want any more hives. I usually carry it out in late Sept/early Oct. My version goes: Bottom brood box with brood and eggs, then a Super, then Hive mat with opening to rear of hive, Top brood box with Queen and plenty of pollen and honey. If the hive is really cranking, I will put another queen excluder and Super on top of this also. The original foragers return to the bottom box and fill the lower super with honey. There is plenty of feed coming in and the hive produces good quality emergency cells. The hive is not overcrowded and the resulting virgin queens scrap it out rather than swarm. You can of course go back later and remove surplus emergency cells if you prefer. I did that in the first couple of years but decided the extra time wasn't worth it. If I'm lucky and the Spring weather gods smile on us, some of these virgin girls mate and turn into decent queens which I take out and use elsewhere, otherwise they get squished. Either way, one month later I remove the queens from the bottom boxes and recombine the hive with newspaper. The hive mat with the rear entrance gets put on the top of the hive (so the forages from the top box can get back in). At this point the top brood box has a very healthy population because the queen has been getting on with business upstairs. The bottom brood box has heaps of laying room and the hive typically has masses of bees. Timed correctly I end up with stonking big production hives ready for the main flow. As a system it requires only an extra hive mat per hive, rather than all the gear needed for a true split. It also means that you manage the number of hives you have, rather than ending up with more than you can provide forage for. (I have never sold hives, there are already too many).
  7. We used Crimson Clover on our road frontage last year and it has just started flowering again this spring, it has a lovely deep red flower. We have oversown the same area with Phacelia and white clover this year as well to mix it up a bit. Got a lot of funny looks and toots from the neighbours as we were out there with the rotary hoe last spring, sowing the long acre!
  8. https://www.newstalkzb.co.nz/on-air/early-edition/audio/jim-mcmillan-nz-produced-manuka-honey-to-retail-for-2700-at-londons-harrods/
  9. Typically a wet interior over winter is due to condensation. Warm air from the cluster meeting a cold hive mat or the roof of a corflute nuc. I use polystyrene under all our sprung lids and on top of over wintered corflute nucs. Also tipping the hive/nuc slightly forward helps any water in the base to drain out so it doesn't puddle on the hive base.
  10. Unfortunately Bees are not my only livestock. I also farm sheep, cattle and goats. Tutu has killed an awful lot of livestock in this country over the years.
  11. Chelifers are generalist predators, much like common ladybirds. Yes they sometimes eat Varroa destructor, sometimes Psocoptera (booklice) and sometimes other things that stay still long enough! They require diversity, which is distinctly lacking inside a beehive. The most effect biocontrol agents are host specific. I agree totally with @john berry that our research funds should be targeting specific parasitic species. A parasite that attacks Scolypopa would be great. Better yet something that eats the damn Tutu Shrubs. That said, it pays to remember that no biocontrol agent will totally eliminate their host, as that would be self defeating.
  12. https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/farming/113273321/comvita-head-to-step-down-following-industry-downturn
  13. Yes I meant silicone mats. I can only dream of the Alfranseder
  14. I have just bought a silicone press to try (for fun), which I bought from Thornes in the UK. I doubt the cost effectiveness but thought it would be something else to play with. Is yours a flexible one or solid?
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